Due to the current situation with COVID-19, I am making some changes to how and where I am operating. Please read this post to learn more about where you can find me, what I'm doing to keep you (and me) safe, and how you can book in to shop with me.
Delivery of food is listed as a key service in the government guidance issued after Boris Johnson's ministerial address on 23 March, and outdoor market stalls selling food are explicitly listed as being allowed. Unfortunately, none of the markets I was standing at - Wirksworth, Matlock, Ashbourne, Greener Heanor, and Treacle - are being held at the moment. In addition, the Whitworth Centre is currently closed and have asked me not to stand there until it reopens. This is primarily due to concerns over the ability to ensure proper social distancing, but is frustrating both for me and for my customers who wish to buy food. People were doing a great job of keeping a distance before the lockdown began, and unfortunately the behaviour of a few idiots prior to the lockdown have now made it harder for small businesses to serve their communities.
I have found a few locations where I can stand on private property. However, to ensure proper social distancing, I am implementing a booking system. Customers need to pre-book a time to come with containers and have them filled. The link to the booking system is at the end of this post - please read the rest of the information here before booking.
Here are the changes you will notice when visiting the van:
- You will prebook your vist via the booking system on the website (more on this later), allowing you to avoid contact with others through queueing.
- No products will be displayed outside the van. I still stock deodorants, toothbrushes, shampoo bars, etc., but you will need to ask for them.
- A table will be across the door to the van; customers are no longer allowed to enter. This ensures we keep the appropriate distance between us. It also gives you a surface to put your containers on to help with filling and packing, so... silver linings!
- I will be sanitising my hands regularly, and wiping down the scale and my work surface with BS-EN 1276 certified sanitiser between customers. This should prevent any transfer of pathogens from the previous customer's containers to yours.
- I recommend that when you get home you clean/sanitise the outsides of your containers and wash your hands before putting them away.
How you can help - PLEASE DO:
- Book the appropriate length appointment for the number of items you want. This means you need to make a list before coming, and plan for your visit.
- Plan to buy enough to last you a couple of weeks. I am taking this week by week and can't guarantee you'll be able to come again next week.
- Be sensible about how far you are travelling for refills! If you are travelling a lot further than you would to a supermarket, please reconsider if the journey is really necessary.
- Please ensure your containers are clean, but most importantly DRY. I can't fill containers that are wet on the inside - water breeds bacteria.
- Please don't book to only buy one or two items. Wait instead until you need to buy more things to make the journey worth it.
- Please don't book an appointment only to buy flour and yeast. I appreciate the new interest in the business, but I am trying to continue to serve my customers who want to shop plastic free. If you are only interested in flour and yeast, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire.
- Please don't visit if you are feeling ill, or if someone in your house is ill. I need to stay healthy if I'm to continue operating.
Unfortunately, the manufacturer SESI uses to make the cleaning products has had to halt production due to staff shortages from people self-isolating. It is unclear how long this will go on for. Liquid hand soap and non-bio laundry liquid are both sold out.
Appointments for a particular location open 7 days before the scheduled event. This allows me to reschedule or cancel locations if required without having a full diary of people who would be disappointed. If you don't see any available dates, check back tomorrow.